‘Occasional Poem on Returning Home’ by He Zhi Zhang (translation)

Some years ago I found the village in China where my father was born, where everyone shared the same surname.  All the young people had left for the city to find work.  Only old folks and small children remained.  I had a sense of homecoming, yet the curious looks I received told me that I was a stranger in my own home town.  This Tang Dynasty poem came to mind.

Occasional Poem on Returning Home (1/2)by He Zhi Zhang (659 – 744)

Young and small I left my home; grown, old, I returned

No changes in my accent; hair thin at my temple

Children who saw me knew me not

Smiling they asked: from where have you wandered?

(c) Mary Tang 鄧許文蘭 2015


    少小離家老大回,    鄉音無改鬢毛衰

    兒童相見不相識,    笑問客從何處來

About Mary Tang

An urban orchardist everyday, a volunteer regularly, a poet sometimes and a blogger since March 2015. I travel when I can. Food is a constant.
This entry was posted in Poetry, Poetry Translation and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to ‘Occasional Poem on Returning Home’ by He Zhi Zhang (translation)

  1. Pingback: ‘Occasional Poem on Returning Home’ by He Zhi Zhang (translation) | Life is But This 命

  2. angela1313 says:

    So lovely to hear your voice. “Talking” via blog post I always wonder what people sound like. You have just the voice for poetry i think.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This is poignant and lovely, Mary. Your Exchange of gifts post, which I really liked on the e-mail alert, came up ‘page not found’, so I came on here to let you know, and found these others I hadn’t seen.

    Liked by 1 person

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